Road safety warning after three motorcyclist deaths in a week

Three male motrocyclists have died on our roads in six days.
Three male motrocyclists have died on our roads in six days.

Following the deaths of three motorcyclists on Northern Ireland’s roads in the space of six days police have appealed for people to take extra care when travelling over Easter.

A spokesman said increased traffic levels are expected during the holidays and police are urging drivers, motorcyclists and pedestrians to take extra care on the roads.

The warning comes after three men died in road accidents in less than a week.

On Saturday a 28 year-old died after his motorbike collided with a tractor and trailer on the Baranailt Road in Limavady.

Two other men aged in their 20s who were travelling on a second motorbike were taken to hospital for injuries which are not believed to be life-threatening. The driver of the tractor was not injured.

A day earlier Richard Brown, 44, from Lisbellaw died after his motorcycle was in collision with a tractor at around 8.15pm on Friday on the Belfast Road in Fivemiletown.

On Monday Alan Kelso from Antrim died when his Honda motorcycle struck a telegraph pole on Crumlin’s Dungonnell Road.
In the wake of these deaths Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd said road users must take greater care and explained that there will be extra PSNI offices on patrol, working with Garda officers in border counties.

“With many people enjoying some time off over the coming week, we are appealing to all road users to exercise caution, as our statistics illustrate that, like any other holiday period, there is an increased risk of collisions,” he said.

“Considering that speeding and drink driving remain the biggest causes of collisions which kill and seriously injure people on roads across Northern Ireland, our message to drivers and riders is very simple.

“If you speed, take drink or drugs and drive, fail to wear your seatbelt, drive carelessly or dangerously, you run the real risk of killing or seriously injuring yourself, your passengers or some other innocent road user.

“Over the coming week, we will have additional police resources on the roads across Northern Ireland and will be liaising closely with our An Garda Síochána Traffic Corps colleagues in the border counties, specifically looking for road users taking unnecessary and potentially life-changing risks.”

With children being off school for the Easter holidays and more motorcyclists taking to the roads as the weather improves, police said drivers should be extra vigilant.

“As many school children will be enjoying the holidays, road users should also keep an eye out for increased numbers of children using or crossing roads, particularly close to schools, parks and leisure amenities, in addition to junctions and bus stops,” he said.

“With the brighter evenings, we are also particularly mindful of many motorcyclists taking their machines out of winter storage for the first run of the season. Bikers must ensure their motorcycles and safety equipment are in good working order, particularly after being laid up over the winter months.

“Everyone must take into account increased traffic levels over the holiday period and heed the road safety message. We will enforce the law to make Northern Ireland’s roads safer, but our role is very much secondary.

“All road users have a role to play in preventing deaths and injuries on our roads. All we ask is that drivers slow down, do not drive after drinking or taking drugs, wear a seatbelt and drive with greater care and attention,” he added.